Planned Parenthood describes Mirena as one of the most effective hormonal intrauterine devices (IUDs) available. Like other hormonal IUDs, Mirena is inserted into a woman’s uterus and acts as a form of contraception. Once implanted, Mirena steadily releases the hormone progesterone, reducing pregnancy risk. 

Planned Parenthood claims that Mirena is nearly 100 percent effective. Unlike daily birth control pills, Mirena can provide effective protection against pregnancy for five years, and there is no maintenance required once it is implanted.

It is no wonder, then, that Mirena has been a popular choice of contraception for countless women. That is not to say it is without risk or side effects, both during use and upon removal. When the Mirena device is removed prematurely, women may suffer from the “Mirena crash.”

The Mirena IUD Device’s Side Effects and Risks

While the Mirena device is properly implanted, it releases a synthetic version of the hormone progesterone into the woman’s body. 

Some of the side effects that accompany the use of Mirena include:

  • Cramping
  • Depression and mood swings
  • Fatigue
  • Discomfort and pain if the device fails to remain in place
  • Increased risk of pelvic inflammatory disease

Mirena also poses a risk of causing ectopic pregnancies. If the device dislodges from the uterus and moves to the vagina, its effectiveness as a contraceptive is lost, and it poses a risk of causing birth injuries.

Explaining the “Mirena Crash” and Why It Happens

Fearing these risks and side effects, upon learning of them, some women sought to have their Mirena device removed prematurely. What was discovered, however, is that upon removal of the device, there was no immediate replacement for the progesterone it had been supplying to the woman’s body.

While the Mirena device remained implanted and working, the woman’s body ceased producing progesterone naturally. Without progesterone, the woman would develop a significant hormone imbalance. This imbalance, and its associated symptoms, would remain until her body resumed production of progesterone naturally.

The symptoms of the Mirena crash were similar to the side effects that women wanted to avoid by removing the device early. Some patients described their experience in having Mirena removed as a severe hormonal crash.

One of the most prevalent symptoms of a Mirena crash is mood swings and depression. Sometimes, a patient’s depression can become severe and lead to suicidal feelings and thoughts. Other times, sudden mood swings, from sadness to anger to depression to anxiety, can strain a woman’s personal and professional relationships.

Women also experienced physical symptoms during a Mirena crash. These physical symptoms included fatigue and tiredness, muscle aches, nausea and stomach pain, and breast tenderness.

These symptoms can last for months, occurring at regular or random times of the day or night. The symptoms decrease once the body begins to create its own progesterone again, which could take weeks or months.

The Mirena Crash Is Real, and There Are Things You Can Do About It

The medical community has been slow to accept the Mirena crash as a real consequence of Mirena device removal. As a result, there is little research on the prevalence of the Mirena crash in women or the pervasiveness of some of its symptoms.

Nonetheless, it may help to know that Mirena’s crash symptoms result from a hormonal imbalance that should regulate itself in time. Practicing good self-care like eating healthy and getting regular, light exercise may help alleviate some of the physical and mental symptoms.

Beyond these steps, maintaining regular communication with your doctor and seeking help from a mental health professional can give you the resources you need to get through the Mirena crash.

If you suffered injuries following the removal of your Mirena device, you may be entitled to economic and non-economic damages. Contact a product liability lawyer for assistance. 

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